Criminal Cases Review Commission
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CCRC sends five more Post Office cases to the Crown Court for appeal

Five more Post Office cases have been referred to the Crown Court by the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) due to concerns about the discredited Horizon computer system.

The CCRC has referred these cases while awaiting UK Government legislation on Post Office Horizon cases to come into effect, so existing applications from Post Office workers can be reviewed as quickly as possible by the courts.  

The CCRC has now sent 76 Post Office cases back to the courts. 

  • Kimberley Connors was a Customer Service Consultant at the St Austell Post Office in Cornwall. She pleaded guilty to five counts of fraud by false representation at Bodmin Magistrates’ Court in May 2009. She was sentenced to 50 weeks imprisonment suspended for 18 months, 150 hours unpaid work and repayment costs of £500.  
  • Sushma Blaggan was the sub-postmistress of the Dale Acre branch in Kent and pleaded guilty to two counts of false accounting in June 2004 at South Sefton Magistrates’ Court. She was sentenced to a community punishment order with 140 hours unpaid work, repayment costs of £220 and was ordered to pay compensation of £8,810.  
  • Thomas Mulhall was sub-postmaster at the branch on Lord Street in Fleetwood, Lancashire. He pleaded guilty to a count of fraud by false representation in December 2012 at Fleetwood Magistrate’s court. He was sentenced to a one-year community order of 100 hours unpaid work and given a costs order of £2,408.  
  • Seema Rahman was employed at Witton Post Office in Birmingham and pleaded guilty to falsifying a document by making a false entry into the Horizon accounting system in September 2012. She was sentenced to a community order with 250 hours unpaid work, which was reduced to 90 on appeal, and paying back costs of £300. 
  • Ms F was a sub-postmistress in southern England and pleaded guilty to three counts of false accounting at a Magistrates’ Court in August 2005. She was sentenced in 2006 and received a two-year conditional discharge, having repaid £39,719.41. She was also given a repayment costs order of £200. 

The CCRC can still refer Post Offices cases to the courts until the legislation comes into effect, but if a case is referred by us to the Court of Appeal and the appeal is rejected, the applicant will then not be covered by the proposed legislation. This isn’t the case with Crown Court referrals. 

We are committed to helping those who are a potential victim of a miscarriage of justice and would encourage people to apply.   

Notes to Editors:

  1. ‘Ms F’ has been anonymised due to concerns for her welfare.  
  2. The CCRC is an independent body set up under the Criminal Appeal Act 1995. It is responsible for independently reviewing suspected and alleged miscarriages of criminal justice in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It is based in Birmingham and is funded by the Ministry of Justice.     
  3. There are currently 10 Commissioners who bring to the CCRC considerable experience from a wide variety of backgrounds. Commissioners are appointed by the Monarch on the recommendation of the Prime Minister in accordance with the Office for the Commissioner for Public Appointments’ Code of Practice.  The Chairman, who is also a Commissioner, is not involved in the casework decision-making process.     
  4. The CCRC usually receives around 1,600 applications for reviews (convictions and/or sentences) each year. Since starting work in 1997, the CCRC has referred around 3% of applications to the appeal courts.     
  5. The CCRC considers whether, as a result of new evidence or argument, there is a real possibility that the conviction would not be upheld were a reference to be made. New evidence or argument is argument or evidence which has not been raised during the trial or on appeal.  Applicants should usually have appealed first. A case can be referred in the absence of new evidence or argument or an earlier appeal only if there are “exceptional circumstances”.     
  6. If a case is referred, it is then for the appeal court to decide whether the conviction is unsafe or the sentence unfair.    
  7. More details about the role and work of the Criminal Cases Review Commission can be found at The CCRC can be found on Twitter @ccrcupdate.


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